What Is “Meninism,” & Why Should You Care?

It's hard to decide on the best reason why "meninism" is awful and dumb, but let's try. The hashtag #MeninistTwitter pops up on the trending list from time to time, but generally keeps to its own crappy little corner of Twitter where anti-feminists hang around doling out virtual high fives. "Why can't she open the door for me?" they cry. "Why can't I wear her hoodie?" they demand.
Feminism, of course, is the reason why these men are forced to shiver in the cold, dark movie-theater air. Feminism is why everything is wrong with everything. Did you know, for example, that "shitty feminist sociologists came up with theory that all men should be tortured and dead. Wuteven." Wuteven, indeed?!
The second reason meninism is the dumbest, dumbest thing ever is that it originated with a group of male allies of feminism. "We are opposed to all forms of misogynist behavior and sexist attitudes," reads its manifesto. Last year, Twitter user Ti Balogun (a self-described feminist) created the hashtag as a form of "satire." But, the oppressed dudes of the Internet seized the chance to air grievances about feminism, inequality, and "little bitches."
When his not-so-clever joke went off the rails, Balogun realized his gaff, telling The Huffington Post, "The feminist movement, in particular, certainly makes society aware of the disadvantages of women specifically, and is an ideal that should be respected and further evaluated by those with limited knowledge." Read: Shut it down, idiots.
There's no stopping this runaway train, and in the year since #MeninistTwitter first appeared, it's only gotten worse. At least half of these tweets appear to be trolling. One guy tweeted a horrifying photo of a woman being pushed down the stairs by her husband, with the caption "Men should have a say in abortion!" The same guy also tweets Cosby rape jokes and videos of ISIS decapitations. He's a classic troll, and the only thing to do with scum like that is report it and walk away. He does not deserve your outrage.
Some of the men (and, ugh, women) on this hashtag do believe they're engaging in some form of activism. These are the ones who tweet about the egregious double standards imposed on men: "Why do you ask my height but get offended when I ask your weight? I am not defined by my height!" These sincere meninists seem simply to be a group of men's rights activists who think they're too cool for that movement. So, congratulations, meninists: You're hipster MRAs.
As with the men's rights movement, the problem here isn't feminism. A woman judging a man by his height is just as bad as him judging her by her weight, and any feminist (or rational thinker) would know that. Feminism is about equality between the sexes — hoodies for all. Meninism is about misogyny, trolling, and making a fool of yourself on Twitter. It's not a movement. It's a joke. The jerks perpetuating it? They're the punchline.

More from Politics

R29 Original Series